My pileated friend came back!

21 09 2009

This morning, I was checking on the feeder and I noticed my pileated friend from last week was back.  She was hopping along my fence and pecking away (Great – if this keeps up I’ll need a new fence  😉 ) I managed to get the balcony door open so that the glass wouldn’t be in the way of my shot this time.  She hopped up onto the railing and then we proceeded to have a staring contest.  She looked at me, I looked at her.  Neither of us daring to move in the hope that the other wouldn’t do anything rash.   After what felt like an eternity (actually probably about 30 seconds) she decided that the feeder was just too tempting and that I wasn’t the big threat to her…  I slowly lifted the camera and then it happened… the indicator flashed and flashed… too dark!  What???  I was shooting using Auto ISO.  Apparently I needed more than 1600 for the morning light with the 100-400.  Urghh… cursed F/5.6  Why could I not afford a 400 f/2.8???  Oh yeah. This is why. Sigh.  I carefully moved my fingers and ramped up the ISO to 3200 and managed a few shots before she had had enough of the glamour life. Here’s the best of today’s shoot (click on it for the big version – birghter – nicer…):
pileated woodpecker feeder Burnaby BC Canada

Also, sitting quietly in the fir tree to the back was a lovely Northern Flicker who was more or less patiently waiting for his turn at the feeder.

It’s one of the few times I’ve managed to shoot the flicker in the tree!  Unfortunately the tree was even darker than the feeder.  I got this guy at ISO 6400.  A little Noise Ninja cleaned him right up nicely though:
NorthernFlicker Flicker Bird redshafted Burnaby BC Canada

I think they’re starting to like hanging around.  I also think I saw the first Junco of the winter today. I KNOW the pine siskins and the towhees are back already.  Winter in this area really brings a lot of interesting birds around.

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